Have you ever felt alone, scared, angry, confused, and hurt all at the same time? Ever felt like running away from a difficult situation? I have. There was a time when I wanted to run—hard and fast—from life as I knew it.
I was a young mom with three babies that had been born within three and a half years. (A maternal trifecta!) Then, to everybody’s surprise, my husband got a promotion that moved our seedling family across the country to a place where we didn’t know anybody.
I jokingly refer to that time as the “blurry era.” I had two babies in diapers that carried around their blankies, and one “big boy” who was potty training and struggling to say goodbye to his binky. There was always a diaper to change, a mouth to feed, or a mess to clean up.
My days were a blur and my emotions were overloaded.
I was tired 24/7.
Each day, my husband Brad wore a suit, smelled of cologne, and drove to a sleek metropolitan high rise. I wore sweats, smelled of either throw up, baby food, or formula, and stayed home with three little humans who constantly cried, ate, played, made a mess, or slept (but never at the same time).
Brad earned his company’s President’s Club Award that year. I earned our family’s Pouter Club Award.
I had left the work force and surrendered my weekly paycheck to wipe little bottoms and snotty noses. While I love my children dearly and did enjoy many sweet mommy moments, life didn’t seem fair at the time.
As a young mom, I regularly wrestled with my role in our family. My identity felt muted. Chained down. I felt that to embrace my position as a stay-at-home mom was the equivalent of hugging a porcupine. I didn’t want to do it! I associated my worth with my work…and wrongly so.
I allowed my self-worth to be determined by variable factors.
I felt less valuable as a woman, and I felt alone.
Postpartum depression was my reality. In darker moments, I felt invisible and insignificant. As if the world might be better without me.
So many women struggle with these same feelings. Perhaps you are wrestling with feelings of insignificance right now. Allow these words of Jesus to turn your heart to the truth of your value:
“Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” (Luke 12:6-7)
I struggled to view myself as God did.
During that season Scripture was essential to train my heart on truth. (It still is!) God also used a friend to remind me of my value. He answered prayers that never even made it past my lips when he sent me a priceless girlfriend named Peg. She was a young mom who had also just left the workforce. We laughed together, cried together, prayed together, watched each other’s children, and encouraged one another. She was a true blessing in that desperate season of life.
Do you have friends like Peg? Are you that friend to anyone else?
Christian community makes such a difference. It’s important that we don’t push people away and isolate. It’s important that we don’t push God away. When we open our hearts and our homes to others and embrace the truth of who God says we are, we become vessels of encouragement and esteem to one another.
“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: if one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10)
Thanks for the beauty of friendship and for reminding me that I am never beyond Your sight or Your reach. Help me to face blurry and emotionally charged days with a courage that is firmly routed in your strength.
In Jesus’ name, amen
FOR YOUR REFLECTION and RESPONSE
Read what the Lord said through the prophet Isaiah in Isaiah 49:15-16, “Can a woman forget her nursing child and have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, but I will not forget you. Behold, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands.”
How does this affect you to know that this is God’s heart for you? Would love to hear where you are with this. Did you need this reminder today? Click here to leave a comment or to post a prayer need. Encourage one another. Be the body. Be the beauty. Pray and love on each other. It’s what we do around here!
As always, I’m grateful to do life with you.
Portions of today’s post are from my book Broken Into Beautiful. If you’re brave enough to get real so that you—and those you love—can discover true freedom and God’s extravagant restoration, get your copy today from Amazon or, for a signed copy, visit my web store.